So you’ve spent the time and money to guarantee your website gets found. You’re ranking high on Google for all the right keywords and your site is getting a ton of traffic. However, if you don’t optimize your site for conversions you’re wasting all that valuable traffic that you expended so much effort to attain. Reeling in a new visitor is good, but getting that visitor to CONVERT is your end goal.
Here are 5 suggestions about how to do that, based on my experience in the online retail world:
1. Minimize Clicks
You want to minimize the number of clicks needed for the visitor to convert. Whatever your primary product is, place a large and prominent call to action above the fold that takes the visitor to the conversion screen with one click. For example, if you are seeking donations for a charity, place a CTA message that says “Click here to donate!” near the top of the page. Make sure your site is designed to funnel a visitor’s eyes toward that call to action to further entice a click. The next page they land on should be the checkout page that allows them to choose an amount and complete the transaction.
2. Don’t Confuse Your Visitors
If your site’s visitors have to think too much, they might think their way away from the conversion you seek. Many companies try to force too much content onto their homepage to ensure that all of their products/services/information can be found on the same screen. Resist clutter. Numerous options can draw a person to surf through the choices instead of making the simple decision to buy ONE thing. Utilize crafty design tactics (proper organization, drop down menus, tabs) to wipe away the mess and store your more obscure products or detailed information elsewhere. This brings us to the next mantra.
3. Always Put Your Best Foot Forward
When someone arrives on one of your pages what do they see? You should always keep this in mind and your pages accordingly on a regular basis. If you’re in retail, the items above the fold should be the best selling, newest or the ones on sale. Always make sure the most compelling reasons to convert are the first things a person finds when they land on your pages.
4. Anticipate Objections And Counter Accordingly
Overcoming objections is a key component of the sales equation. To create a conversion, you must essentially “sell” your visitor, convincing them to give you their money or email address or vote or whatever it is that you’re trying to achieve with this website. “When we talk about things like this, each detail is capable of creating ripples that are impacting” remarks Marc Holland, strategy coordinator with Home Star Search, an online resource in the rent to own home ownership space.
Let’s say you have an online store that sells hats. What are the possible objections to buying a hat? Maybe: “This isn’t the best looking one” or “It might not fit right” or “I’ll never wear it”. So, on the page for each hat should be clearly accessibly link to a sizing chart with a product description that quells other possible doubs a consumer may have: you must list a reason why it is stylish (check out the flat red brim), convince them it will fit and a scenario where the customer would wear it (great to protect your from the sun at the beach!). If these bases are not covered, a visitor may see a product they like but then talk themselves out of purchasing.
5. Keep It Fresh
Visitors are less likely to convert is they see the same thing on your site over and over again. Make sure you constantly update your pages, especially the home page. Human beings are naturally inclined to seek new experiences, it’s part of our psychological nature. If someone buys something from you on Friday, they need to believe there will be something truly compelling for them to find on Monday if you want them come back again so soon. Simply having fresh content appear on a consist basis will encourage customers to return and convert again. If they come back a week after their last purchase and see the same products, they probably won’t be buying anything new.
About the Author:
Jared Diamond writes about topics ranging from conversion theory to entrepreneurship.